- Thursday, March 10, 2016
- 3:30 PM–5:00 PM
- Meeter Center Lecture Hall
Dr. Brianne Donaldson's lecture abstract:
Animal and environmental liberation movements are characterized by an understandable mistrust of grand religious narratives that attempt to explain all of reality. These narratives too often perpetuate a hierarchy that places (certain) humans at the top as fundamentally superior, and plants and animals at the bottom. In these hierarchies, dominion and violence are seen as "natural" and unavoidable. Yet, throwing out religious narratives altogether has allowed inadequate and equally human-centric worldviews to dominate "secular" public discourse in science, politics, and ethics. The challenge, then, is to search out new religious narratives that (1) start in the middle of creaturely life, and (2) transform hierarchies into dynamic forms of relationship. I look to the “creaturely cosmologies” of Alfred North Whitehead’s process theology and the ancient nonviolent tradition of Jainism as alternative frameworks that illuminate new perspectives of our creaturely multitude, and visions for futures of less loss.
Calvin Center for Christian Scholarship, Calvin Religion Department, Calvin Biology Department, Animals and the Kingdom of God lecture series